Fusing painting and photography into densely layered collages, Vahlefeld's work capture the spirit of a generation that playfully mixes media and styles.
The canvas becomes a palette of inkjet-prints as the painting upon it takes shape. The surfaces appear as fragile and fugitive, as ravaged and ruptured, as the explosive emotional and psychological content of his handling the paint, competing with assorted drips, squiggles, stains, and scrubbing gestures. Areas are sanded down and gauged out, the acrylics and oils he uses are combined, erased and re-combined multiple times until the surface and image he reveals find a precarious, off-kilter harmony. Vahlefeld scratches on the faux facades of the seemingly glossy objects of desire. Hijacking material from the public domain and obscuring them with different techniques ranging from stencils to silkscreen to oil paint, he further complicates the everyday transaction of images by taking away the content it is supposed to advertise. His interest lies not in the manipulation of pop iconography, but rather in the unnerving emotional effects generated by its obtrusive presence.
With an aggressive gesture Peter Vahlefeld broadens the repertoire of disturbances in his paintings as an integral part of the formative concept. Enlarging overpainted advertisements to grand scale and spattering the images with abstract paint and digital prints once again, Peter Vahlefeld is converting the propaganda into a fiction of colour. The openly fought conflict between overpainting and omission which calls attention to the surface of the paintings and the scepticism toward the hierarchy of imagery accounts for the strong lure of his works.
December 29, 2011
advertising, analog, branding, collage, digital, painting, photography, Mixed Media, New Media, art criticism, Expropriation, auction houses